Developing cornering confidence

Discussion in 'Pro Cycling (Road and Track Racing)' started by Hawk, 27 Jul 2012.

  1. Hawk

    Hawk Well-Known Member

    Bearsden, Glasgow
    I've had a good look on youtube/google and even had the pleasure of a few lessons from racing-types, from my area, on cornering and I think I know what makes for a good cornering technique but....

    Where do all you racing types get your confidence from? I realised during a cornering drill with our club that I'm waaayy slower to corner than most others (it's quite a fast club which I'm perfectly fine with on the road, not so much on the hairpin bend we were practising on!!).

    Is there anything more to it than just going out and cornering harder and harder until I inevitably find the limit?
  2. lb81

    lb81 Senior Member

    I am not a 'racing type' at all - my roadie is a £300 Triban, but moving from riding MTB to doing some road riding I enjoy really attacking twisty sections just as much as I do off road and have found that the technique is very similar.

    For me its all about line choice and trying to keep as smooth as possible to avoid unsettling the bike. When I am riding fast single track off road I allow the bike to move beneath me and find the grip available and on our rutted and pot holed tarmac I have found a similar approach to be really effective. I have surprised several very 'pro' looking fellas when out riding pulling out quite a lead or overtaking them etc on twisty downhill sections (I then get blown away on the straight bits & climbs :whistle:).

    IMO its not so much about cornering harder & harder until you find the limit and more about being smoother & smoother finding the right line and let the bike find the grip that is there...

    Probably of no use and get told its all wrong by proper roadie types but works for me!
    Linford and Hawk like this.
  3. Smokin Joe

    Smokin Joe Legendary Member

    1/ Get all your braking done before you reach the turn.

    2/ Get the back nice and flat to lower your centre of gravity, keep the outside pedal down.

    3/ Keep a relaxed grip on the bars, don't hold them too tight.

    4/ Use your eyes to steer the bike. The line you are looking through will be where the bike will go, to tighten your line look toward the verge, to widen it look away.

    All there is too it, practice till it becomes second nature.
    Linford and Hawk like this.
  4. in a race, your cornering 'technique' is largely dictated by the group around you and as such, I've never really considered it. In a solo situation, I suppose that any technique which gets you through the corner and out the other side whilst remaining upright and not losing too much momentum has to be a good one.
    Hawk likes this.
  5. Broadside

    Broadside Veteran

    Fleet, Hants
    I'm not a racer but to add to Smokin Joe's comments I would add that as you go through the corner lean in well but push down on the outside pedal at the same time. I read that once on here 2-3 years ago and it turned out to be excellent advice which I still use now. It makes a real difference to keeping the wheels planted.
    Hawk likes this.
  6. montage

    montage God Almighty

    Follow wheels and trust the tyres (or buy trustable tyres!).

    To corner tightly, a few tips from Geriant Thomas which helped me to no end a while back:
    - look where you are going
    - ride the drops
    - get as low as possible - chin basically touching the bars
    - inside leg up (duh!)
    - rotate your pelvis so that your hips are facing in the direction of the turn, rather than simply facing forward on the saddle. This helps soooo much on tight corners

    I used to suck at cornering pretty hard, but a bit of practise and a year or two later, and I now enjoy the flat technical crits the most. A bit of pace and some good cornering on the front and you can cause serious damage to the pack
    Hawk likes this.
  7. Ian H

    Ian H Guru

    East Devon
    Correct pressures help no end.
    Hawk likes this.
  8. PaulB

    PaulB Guru

    1. Slow down.
    2. Brake to a halt.
    3. Get off bike
    4. Hold bike by handlebars
    5. Walk slowly around the bend until you come to a straight bit
    6. Re-mount bike
    7. Pedal away.

    My recipe for success.
    gaz, montage and PpPete like this.
  9. Smokin Joe

    Smokin Joe Legendary Member

    Don't be bloody stupid, Paul.

    That's the hill climbing technique.
    gaz likes this.
  10. Arsen Gere

    Arsen Gere Über Member

    North East, UK
    I've always shifted my weight slightly in to the corner so the saddle is pressed in to the inside of my outside leg ( hope that makes sense) this gives you a bit left if you have to lean the bike a bit further when you get to see past the apex. The outer leg pressed to the saddle makes steering a lot easier. If you look at the slow mo on the Olympic road race that the BBC did you can see sky riders doing this on the U bend on the descent.

    For some bizarre reason I have seen some young pro's lean the bike in and keep themselves up right.

    Another point to note is that if you look at the exit of the bend as you approach, the more you can see of the road surface the faster you can take the bend. Conversley if you can't see the surface it is damn tight or an adverse camber and you need to slow down a bit more. However a bend that gets tighter as you get in to it can catch you out, but if your weight is in to the bend and the bike has some lean left you can get away with a lot more.
  11. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Man or Moose!

    For some corners (or even some line's around the same corner) this is preferable. seen quite a good guide on different cornering techniques before but cant find it, this is the next best thing.
  12. bof

    bof Senior member. Oi! Less of the senior please

    The world
    Until his spill in Richmond Park, I would have said look at what Fabian Cancellaria does as he has possibly the best technique in the Peleton.
  13. Arsen Gere

    Arsen Gere Über Member

    North East, UK
    I see the point about countersteering but I'm not convinced, it doesn't mean I would not change my mind though. I like my centre of gravity on the centre of the bike or inside the curve, the lower the better, hence chin down/low position as described by montage and smokin joe. The only time I can think I've done any steering like this is riding crits where you have to flick back and forth round bends and riders usually when I've been trying to keep my body in a straight line but not on descents as described.

    Dunno if folks are interested but here is an example of a long descent with with a sweeping blind bend taken at 40mph using this technique in a tucked position last weekend on a road bike in a triathlon. It's on the north side of the lake.
  14. Arsen Gere

    Arsen Gere Über Member

    North East, UK
    I totally agree with you, there is a youtube video of him chasing a group I think it is this one I can't see the vids from this offfice.
  15. Smokin Joe

    Smokin Joe Legendary Member

    I didn't think the thread would last without a mention of countersteering. You don't need to worry about it because you have never banked into a turn in your life without countersteering, it's something the front wheel does all by itself. If you tried to stop it doing so you'd crash. To alter your line change your eyeline, it really is that simple, you don't need to faff about pushing or pulling on the bars.
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